Formally Informal
self-organised
cultural practices

Intro

FORMALLY INFORMAL (FI) is a programme that focuses on the tensions that exist in the sphere of a unique self-organised cultural production in Belgrade amidst the city’s rapid urban, social and economical changes in the aftermath of huge social and economical turbulences. It is intended as a critical experience of self-organised cultural urban practices that have been taking place since the beginning of the century up to the present day, occupying physical and mental space throughout the city.

For the duration of the programme FI cultural programmes would be brought to unexpected pop-up places, inhabiting ‘common spaces’, bringing artistic and crafts workshops and talks and lectures to a general audience, stimulating numerous contacts and taking the professional cultural sphere outside the ‘canon’ – touching base on a point that is much needed both for cultural practitioners and general audiences on a non-exclusive level.

With institutions sterilised of their capacity to articulate the art and cultural practices of a particular time, this project aims to tap into the direction of critical consideration of the contemporary urban art practices. The public programme combines process- and event-based situations.

Blog

Take a look behind the scenes: in the LAB, the artists are developing their projects online. Your contributions and comments to the work in progress are welcome!

  • VIDEO: Overview of the ACTOPOLIS-activities in Belgrade in 2016

    7 October 2016 15:28 by ACTOPOLIS

  • THE RUINS OF SAVAMALA - A CARNIVAL STAGE: The Role of Culture in Gentrification

    1 June 2016 16:23 by ACTOPOLIS

    Printed Wall newspaper. Marija Piroški © Goethe-Institut, 2016

    24th May, Actopolis apartment

    A public presentation and a discussion about the KURS Collective's new issue of Wall Newspaper took place. The issue titled ‘A Carnival Amidst Ruins’ features a comprehensive insight into developments in Belgrade’s Savamala district over the course of the past 5-10 years by Iskra Krstić, architect and member of the Ministarstvo prostora initiative. It addresses gentrification processes in the area, and puts forward that cultural production and the rise of creative industries have (un)willingly played a significant role in it.

  • BONDING OVER GOOD TASTE: ‘Delikatesni ponedeljak’ event

    30 May 2016 19:38 by ACTOPOLIS

    Copyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-InstitutCopyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-InstitutCopyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-InstitutCopyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-InstitutCopyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-Institut

  • FUELED BY THE PEOPLE: Overcoming Precarious Conditions of Current Cultural Models

    29 May 2016 17:24 by ACTOPOLIS

    Miroslav Karić and Marija Radoš. Photo by Marija Piroški © Goethe-Institut, 2016

    26th May, Actopolis Apartment

    Marija Radoš and Miroslav Karić, curators and members of the independent artistic organization Remont, presented the project ‘Individual Case Study’. Their presentation also featured an exhibition of drawings by EmaEmaEma, Mario Kolarić, Andrej Bunuševac and Goran Stojčetović.

  • THINKING UP ORGANIZATION MODELS: The project ‘Rehearsal’

    26 May 2016 10:55 by ACTOPOLIS

    Irena Ristić. Marija Piroški © Goethe-Institut, 2016
    23th May, Actopolis Apartment

    Throughout the ACTOPOLIS BELGRADE project, many programs have highlighted both city’s abundance of self-organized initiatives and the unfavorable working conditions in to which independent cultural workers are subject. Irena Ristić – artist, professor at the Faculty of Dramatic Arts in Belgrade and member of the self-organized Hop.la initiative – has gone a step further.

  • TO BE CONTINUED...'Druga Scena’ Initiative: Memory vs. Legacy

    25 May 2016 15:40 by ACTOPOLIS

    ‘Druga scena’ text in print. Marija Piroški © Goethe-Institut, 2016
    20th May, Actopolis Apartment

    Marijana Cvetković from the initiative Stanica has produced a very compelling piece of writing about the phenomenon of Druga Scena, one of the first self-organized umbrella platforms. The organization was active in Belgrade between 2005 and 2012. It brought together a number of individuals and groups that were dedicated to the critical analysis and political assessment of the predominantly neoliberal processes, along with the distortion of collective memory, that occurred in Serbian society during that time. In the post-Milošević era, a collective endeavour espousing a leftist political agenda was a rarity. Their goal to overcome denominators such as art and culture, and work within a wider social context.

  • AN UNLIKELY BAND: Actopolis Belgrade Group Exhibition

    24 May 2016 13:47 by ACTOPOLIS

    Group discussion at the exhibition opening. Marija Piroški © Goethe-Institut, 2016
    Exhibition opening on 18th May, Actopolis Apartment

    After a series of Urban Incubator and City Guerrilla activities, Actopolis Apartment hosted yet another eclectic event, a group exhibition featuring an unexpected mix of artists belonging to different generations and social circles: Irena Ristić, Nikola Radić Lucati, Mariela Cvetić, and the U10 Art Collective. Each of the presented projects was drew upon the phenomenon of self-organized initiatives in a different ways.

  • UNIQUE MAP OF EXHIBITION SPACES IN BELGRADE

    18 May 2016 11:35 by ACTOPOLIS

    With many new initiatives and exhibition spaces opening in vibrant Belgrade each month, keeping track presents a real challenge both for natives and those visiting Serbia's capital.

    Aleksandar Nikolić recognized a certain communication gap and endeavored on mapping out all active institutional and self-organized spaces. While the idea for this initiative was born last year, it was not until the ACTOPOLIS BELGRADE project that it was set in motion. A couple of days ago, the unique overview of all exhibitions spaces in Belgrade finally saw the light of day in the form of a printed map. Hard copies are available at the ‎ACTOPOLIS‬ apartment in Boulevard despot Stefan 36, and the online version can be downloaded here.

  • ACTOPOLIS - A PLACE FOR MUCH NEEDED CONVERSATION

    18 May 2016 10:35 by ACTOPOLIS

    Irena Ristić, Copyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-Institut
    Interview with Irena Ristić, Actopolis Belgrade participant

  • MARTIN FRITZ IN BELGRADE

    17 May 2016 18:42 by ACTOPOLIS

    Artistic Director of the ACTOPOLIS project, Martin Fritz, paid a visit to Belgrade where he had a chance to explore the cultural scene of Serbia’s capital. During the visit, Martin met with a number of individuals and initiatives, and attended programs at independently run spaces including Magacin, Cultural Centre Grad, Remont, and Oktobar.

    Furthermore, he used the opportunity to discuss the history and organization of the largely-independent local cultural scene with ACTOPOLIS BELGRADE’s curator, Mirjana Boba Stojadinović.

    Martin Fritz and Mirjana Boba Stojadinović, curator of ACTOPOLIS BELGRADE. Photo: Marija Piroški © Goethe-Institut, 2016
    For more information about Martin Fritz click here.

  • THE OUTBURST OF CREATIVITY

    16 May 2016 16:00 by ACTOPOLIS

    SEIN performance, Copyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-InstitutSEIN performance, Copyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-InstitutSEIN performance, Copyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-InstitutSEIN performance, Copyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-InstitutUrban Incubator Exhibition, Copyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-InstitutUrban Incubator Exhibition, Copyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-InstitutUrban Incubator Exhibition, Copyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-InstitutUrban Incubator Exhibition, Copyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-InstitutUrban Incubator Exhibition, Copyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-InstitutOpen Library, Copyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-InstitutOpen Library, Copyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-InstitutUrban Incubator presentation, Copyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-InstitutHermes performance, Copyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-InstitutUrban Incubator Exhibition, Copyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-Institut

  • A NEW PLACE IN TOWN: Actopolis Apartment

    15 May 2016 17:22 by ACTOPOLIS


    One part of the ACTOPOLIS BELGRADE concept is making space, both mental and physical, for a much needed examination of the thriving self-organized community of cultural workers in Serbia. In line with this, project organizers have secured a new location - a rented apartment in the historic city district of Dorćol (36 Despot Stefan Boulevard) - for the entire month of May to serve as a playground for ACTOPOLIS BELGRADE participants.

  • INTERVIEW: 6th ANNIVERSARY OF KURS COLLECTIVE // NEW WALL NEWSPAPER ISSUE OUT

    13 May 2016 13:54 by ACTOPOLIS

    NEW ISSUE OF WALL NEWSPAPER: A Carnival amidst Ruins. Copyright: KURS CollectiveThis year marks the 6th anniversary of KURS, participating artist collective of ACTOPOLIS BELGRADE. We took this occasion to chat with KURS members Mirjana Radovanović and Miloš Miletić about their benchmark project ‘Wall Newspaper’.

  • ACTOPOLIS BELGRADE PROJECT ‘FORMALLY INFORMAL’ OPENS WITH A DISCUSSION

    4 May 2016 11:14 by ACTOPOLIS

    Programme cards, Copyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-InstitutVahida Ramujkić, Copyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-InstitutAleksandra Sekulić, Copyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-InstitutNoa Treister, Copyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-InstitutAudience, Copyright: Marija Piroški © Goethe-Institut
    On April 20th, at the library of the Goethe-Institut Belgrade, Belgrade’s edition of the ACTOPOLIS project called “FORMALLY INFORMAL. Belgrade Self-organized Cultural Production” was launched with an evening of presentations and a discussion focusing on the phenomenon of the non-institutional cultural scene in Serbia. The event was moderated by Mirjana Boba Stojadinović, project curator, who for the first time gathered 12 (out of 14) project participants and a capacity audience.

PARTICIPANTS

Aleksandar Nikolić

Aleksandar Nikolić

Actopolis-City: Belgrade

Graduated from the Faculty of Biology at Belgrade University in Ecology and Environmental Protection, after which he focused on waste management as a source of renewable energy. His dedication to the problems of contemporary society, as well as his engagement in the raising of public awareness of their interconnectedness have encouraged his involvement in art activism and inspired him to collaborate with artists and producers in realising different projects and programmes, from workshops and debates to art exhibitions and festivals.

The project Belgrade Art Map in accordance with contemporary trends and possibilities of promotion assumes the role of mediator among over ninety Belgrade art galleries and the audience – the regular one, the non-audience and the potential audience from the local community and further afield. With the aim of creating new contents in the city, which would connect different sectors and resources, Belgrade Art Map offers the audiences up-to-date information on all current and permanent displays and other additional programmes, opens exhibition spaces for new audiences and contextualises the art scene. The result is a much-needed, but not yet existing, bilingual bi-monthly printed map with the Belgrade art space programme, accompanied by a website containing expanded information.
Aleksandra Sekulić & Ivica Djordjevic

Aleksandra Sekulić & Ivica Djordjevic

Actopolis-City: Belgrade

Aleksandra Sekulić: Ph.D. candidate in Theory of Art and Media, University of Arts, Belgrade. Master thesis: “Archiving as a Cultural Form: Creating Video Archives and Databases”. Programme director at the Centre for Cultural Decontamination, Belgrade. Member of the organisation Media Archaeology in Belgrade and cooperative of Kosmoplovci collective.

Ivica Djordjevic: Master candidate in Audio and Video Engineering at The School of Electrical and Computer Engineering of Applied Studies, University of Belgrade. Video and film editor, as well as the author of numerous short films, some of which were awarded prizes. Member of the organisation Media Archaeology and the music band FBD. Former Technical Coordinator at the Alternative and Balkanima festivals in Belgrade.

Within the framework of the Media Archaeology platform, Aleksandra Sekulic and Ivica Djordjevic, together with their team colleagues, have realized a variety of programs and projects, among them are: Youth Culture in Yugoslavia, in 2011 with the National Television of Serbia; Voting Machine with BKV, 2011; Possibility of Choice, 2010, Nadezda Petrovic Memorial; Media Archaeology: The Nineties, 2008/9.
Anica Vučetić

Anica Vučetić

Actopolis-City: Belgrade

Anica Vučetić (born 1962 in Belgrade, Serbia) works on video installations and video environments. Education: University of Arts in Belgrade – Faculty of Fine Arts: Graduate Studies – Bachelor of Arts, Painting (1981/’86); Postgraduate Studies – Magister of Arts, Painting (1986/’89).

Selected Solo-shows: Nostalgia (1995), MAC USP Ibirapuera, São Paulo, Brazil; Environmental Works (1999) and Dreams about the Big Wave (2001), Ludwig Forum for International Art, Aachen, Germany; Video installations (2002), Galeria 23 y 10, ICAIC, Havana, Cuba; Compression (2006) and Flowing In (2009), Belgrade Cultural Centre, Belgrade, Serbia; Cut (2008), Art Gallery “Nadežda Petrović”, Čačak, Serbia; A Long Trip (2010), MoCA of Republic of Srpska, Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegowina; Flowing In (2011), Maribor Art Gallery, Maribor, Slovenia; The Big Wave (1997) and The Fall (2013), Salon of the MoCA Belgrade, A Long Trip (2015), Centre for Contemporary Art of Montenegro, Podgorica.

Politika Award, for the best exhibition in 2008, Serbia.
anicavuc.wix.com/anicavucetic
City Guerilla

City Guerilla

Actopolis-City: Belgrade

City Guerilla is a creative laboratory that rests on the following principles: self-organised youth, their creative association, peer and alternative education, exchange of a wide range of skills, knowledge and ideas. Synergies between these versatile factors foster the production of specific creative spaces where various ideas in the fields of art and social activism can be put into practice.

During the past six years of the project more than hundred young people from Belgrade were given an opportunity to put their ideas into action. City Guerilla allowed them to gain new experiences through self-organization during the process of implementation of the project they devised: “Right to a City – improving your own urban environment themselves.”

Between 2010 and 2015, City Guerilla realized various exhibitions, installations, workshops (in collaboration with local and international artists), debates, lectures, concerts, creative and environmental events and interventions in public spaces, research projects, regional and international events and workshops. With support from the EU “Youth in Action” programme City Guerilla organized two international working meetings.

Report 2015
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Photo: Copyright City Guerilla
Irena Ristic

Irena Ristic

Actopolis-City: Belgrade

Art-maker and researcher mostly focused on cross-disciplinary works and empirical studies in the field of the Psychology of Arts. Leads Hop.La! and works in the Department of Theory of History, FDA Belgrade, as assistant professor.

Irena Ristić graduated in 1992 at the Faculty of Dramatic Arts, Department of Theatrical Direction. She her postgraduate studies at the Department of Psychology in the Faculty of Philosophy and in the Institute for Psychodrama in Belgrade. In 2011 she defended her PhD thesis in the field of the Psychology of Art. Irena Ristić is a researcher and art maker. She has initiated and directed several polymedia works, two experimental films, more than forty theatre productions in city theatres in the region, and a number of significant participatory projects. Her short film Appetite was awarded the prize for the best experimental film in a number of festivals, such as 57th DSFFB. Her main focus includes polymedia works, social experiments and empirical arts research; previous projects are presented in the books Beginning and the end of creative process (2011) and Psychology of creativity (2013). She leads Hop.La! and teaches psychology and psychology of art at Faculty of Dramatic Arts in Belgrade.
KURS

KURS

Actopolis-City: Belgrade

KURS (founded in 2010) is an organisation that examines wider social problems by means of artistic production. KURS acts through various visual forms, primarily through producing murals, illustrations, wall newspapers and video reports. The main aim of KURS is to produce educational and informative content framed by artistic language and presented in some form of artistic expression. Even though KURS is primarily associated with artistic production as a way of expression and articulation, in our work we also strive to join the political struggle and to bring about cooperation with left-orientated organisations.
Mariela Cvetić

Mariela Cvetić

Actopolis-City: Belgrade

Mariela Cvetić, Ph. D. is an artist and art theorist. She is associate professor at the University of Belgrade, Faculty of Architecture and guest professor at the University of Arts, Interdisciplinary Studies of Arts and Media and University of Novi Sad, Faculty of Technical sciences, Department of Architecture and Urban Planning.

Mariela Cvetić is the author of many solo and group exhibitions. Her artistic practice and theoretical work explores the relationship between subject and space. She is a member of the team of authors whose floor installation wonhlich was selected to represent the Republic of Serbia at the 11th International Architecture Exhibition, La Biennale di Venezia, 2008. She is the author of the book Das Unheimliche: Psychoanalitical and Cultural Theories of Space (Das Unheimliche: psihoanalitičke i kulturalne teorije prostora (Belgrade, 2011) and The Artist's Book/Umetnikova knjiga (Belgrade, 2013).
Marija Radoš & Miroslav Karić

Marija Radoš & Miroslav Karić

Actopolis-City: Belgrade

Marija Radoš (Belgrade, 1977). Graduated from the Faculty of Philosophy, History of Art Department, Belgrade University 2005. Since 2005 has worked within Remont – an Independent Artistic Association based in Belgrade as art manager, curator, PR. Colaborated on many local, regional and international projects. Besides engagement in the Remont association she is also the author of several curatorial projects, exhibition texts, art selections and also a member of several artistic boards – Remont Gallery, Blok Gallery, Youth Cultural Center Belgrade, November Salon (Čačak)...

Miroslav Karic (1975) holds a BA in Art History from the Faculty of Philosophy, University of Belgrade (2000) and since 2001 has been a secretary and curator at the Remont-Independent Art Association. Karic has been a member of the editorial team of Remont Art Magazine. During the period from 2004 – 2010 he regularly edited Exhibitions section in the monthly cultural guide Yellow Cab Belgrade. During the last fifteen years Karic has been professionally engaged as a curator, coordinator/organiser and PR specialist on contemporary art and cultural projects. Recent activities include: Art in Serbia since 2000, Donumenta festival, Regensburg; Ex-traordinary, collaborative exhibition project/ workshops with regional curators and artists in Kanjiza, Belgrade, Sarajevo, Podgorica; Sensing Realities (curatorial project with Sasa Janjic), Galerie B -312, Montreal
Marijana Cvetkovic

Marijana Cvetkovic

Actopolis-City: Belgrade

Cultural worker and activist. Co-founder of Station Service for contemporary dance and Nomad Dance Academy, a Balkan platform for the development of contemporary dance and the performing arts. Lecturer at the University of Arts in Belgrade. Works with museums. Publishes texts and edits books on dance, performing arts, cultural policy and museums.

Cvetkovic’s main interests are in the fields of independent culture, contemporary performing arts, museum studies and cultural policy. All these fields are approached through critical theory and practice, institutional critique and transdisciplinarity.
Mirjana Boba Stojadinović

Mirjana Boba Stojadinović

Actopolis-City: Belgrade

Stojadinović has exhibited in solo and group exhibitions nationally and internationally since 1998. She received the Award of the 25th Nadežda Petrović Memorial in 2010 in Čačak, Serbia.

She has initiated and realised projects dealing with visual art in public and private spaces, often in the form of participatory projects. Independent cultural production is her central focus, though she has collaborated with different institutions from Serbia and abroad. Since 2010 she has been the author and director of the project forum ARTIST AS AUDIENCE, a series of public discussions among the audience on chosen artworks. Stojadinović has curated, organised and participated in group exhibitions in Serbia and Europe.

bobaart.wordpress.com
Nebojša Milikić and Tadej Kurepa

Nebojša Milikić and Tadej Kurepa

Actopolis-City: Belgrade

Nebojša Milikić: Cultural worker, researcher and activist. Involved in organisational, artistic and curatorial practice in visual and socially engaged arts. Participates in research projects and activist campaigns. Occasionally writes about cultural and artistic production. Works in the Cultural Center Rex in Belgrade, as the initiator and coordinator of the debate programmes.

Tadej Kurepa: Journalist from Belgrade. He is Coordinator the Cultural Center REX and works on projects "Who Builds the City", "Speech programs" and “Corners of Europe”. His professional interests are media, publishing, cultural theory and the theory of ideology. The area of his closest interest is political cinema and film in general as means of political communication. (http://politfilm.com)
Nikola Radić Lucati

Nikola Radić Lucati

Actopolis-City: Belgrade

Nikola Radić Lucati is an artist who has been exhibiting regularly since 1994. He taught multimedia art at Bezalel Academy of Fine Arts in Jerusalem and photography at the Camera Obscura and Kalisher colleges in Tel Aviv.

He explores the intersections of history, human rights and culture through prisms of photography, text and installation. Has focused his recent work on the issues of Holocaust history and remembrance as the right to minority self-interpretation and representation.
U10 Art Collective

U10 Art Collective

Actopolis-City: Belgrade

Art Space U10 opened on 3 May 2012 as an independent exhibition space. The first exhibition titled 10+1 opened the space to the Belgrade public with an appeal to novel and quality contemporary art. A self-organised team was put together for this occasion consisting of Isidora Krstic, Iva Kuzmanovic, Lidija Delic, Marija Sevic, Nina Ivanovic, Sava Knezevic and Nemanja Nikolic, who is also the initiator of the project.

The fundamental point of the art space is to promote young artists at the beginning of their artistic careers who have not yet had the opportunity to be presented adequately to the local public. The presence of all forms of artistic media has so far created a vibrant and dynamic programme which allowed the space to be transformed according to the approach to artistic practice of each of the artists. Up to this date, over sixty solo and group exhibitions have been carried out along with other events such as public guiding, debates and concerts. In 2015, U10 has been presented at few group shows, festivals, and art fairs: LISTE Art Fair Basel; Kolarac Take Over, Kolarac Foundation, Belgrade; “Beyond Space”, gallery Hanikah, Sarajevo Winter Festival; U10 at Parallel Vienna and U10 at Budapest Art Market.
Urban Incubator

Urban Incubator

Actopolis-City: Belgrade

The goals of the association are professional research of contemporary cities, education of architects, urban planners, designers, artists and other experts, students and citizens, capacity building of associations dealing with planning and development of modern cities as well as raising awareness for the possibilities of city area improvement.

In the first two years the NGO has developed and included projects that are investigating Savamala (the urban, architectural, historic, visual, acoustic, social and other specific phenomena of the area). Urban Incubator projects were active for at least three months and visible to the public. The projects allowed for knowledge transfer among international and local experts and/or between experts and inhabitants and have been designed for long-term impact in the area.

www.urbanincubator.org
Vahida Ramujkic & Noa Treister

Vahida Ramujkic & Noa Treister

Actopolis-City: Belgrade

Vahida Ramujkić is an artist and activist born and living in Belgrade. The long-term research projects that she evolves mostly pass through different stages, and took on different forms and formats: books, events, workshops, etc. Conceived as collaborative processes/practices, her artwork/research focuses on designing protocols for augmenting and employing skills and knowledge for establishing new social relations through creative work/engagement. In 2001 she co-founded the Rotorrr collective in Barcelona with Laia Sadurni. Until 2008 they have carried out a series of collaborative researches, staged events and produced works in public space related to the ongoing urban transformations in the neighbourhoods of Barcelona (Explorations Poble NOW, Sculptures’ Climbing Olympics, Telechronicas, AirAutonomy, Manual GPS, etc.). Research in the field of EU foreign policy culminated in a book: Schengen with ease (2006). Her most important long-term and ongoing projects are Disputed Histories (since 2007), a history textbook library and a series of workshops that compare and analyse opposed historic narratives; and Documentary Embroidery (since 2008), a project and a technique for documenting social reality from multiple perspectives.

Noa Treister – An artist, curator and activist whose work is dedicated to the articulation of various possibilities of economic and political relations and scission in society. Graduated from the Bezalel Art and Design Academy in Jerusalem, Israel and is currently pursuing Postgraduate studies in the Media and Communications programme of the European Graduate School. Treister focuses on re-thinking socio-economic-political issues in both curatorial and artistic projects. Since 2011 she has been a founding member of the Ignorant Schoolmaster and its committees – a platform for self-education. Within that that framework she is the co-author and leading member of Naming IT War – a cooperation of war participants and anti-war activists of the 90s War against Yugoslavia; a member of Legal Help for Workers Fighting against Privatisation and for Workers’ Rights and a founding member of the cooperative Proleterka.